We moved onto the great big dump without seeing a single harrier in the many good fields and wetland areas we passed and had a bit of success on the wader front although did not locate any of the hoped for Red-throated Pipits. Best wader was Black-tailed Godwit (my first of the year and not a bird I see annually in south east Norway) with two feeding rather distantly alongside their Bar-tailed cousin with another Barwit much closer. We also had a very flighty flock of smaller waders which at one stage tried to land at our feet and contained a Knot, a Little Stint, a Ringed Plover and 20 Dunlin.
On the way home we had a stop in Maridalen. Yesterday a Hawk Owl was released there after having spent a few days in rehabilitation after crashing into a window about half way between my house and Maridalen. I had little expectation that we would find it but suddenly it was right in front of us low down in a birch tree right by the path with a horse and rider going past. Looking at the pictures from the release yesterday this may well be the same tree it flew into upon release. It was clearly not in a good shape with both its wings drooping at times and although it could fly from branch to branch it seemed to prefer hopping. I suspect that this bird will be a pile of feathers quite soon. I am addicted to Hawkie but I must say that this was a bad hit and it has left me feeling pretty bad – never good to see such a smart bad in a bad state. I went up again with the girls two hours after seeing it with Rune but the owl was nowhere to be seen (and I checked under the tree) which I hope is a good sign (although it would also make an easy prey for a Goshawk).
Elsewhere in Norway, it looks like two good rare birds might be even rarer birds. An Arctic Warbler on Husøy in Nordland has a call (linked to from the picture) suggesting that it may actually be a Kamchatka Leaf Warbler and therefore a WP first and a Black-browed Albatross seen today offshore in Vesfold (not too far from where Rune and I were) looks to be dark billed, dusky headed and have a lot of white on the underwing suggesting a Yellow-nosed Albatross? I’m off to Værøy in 8 days time and all this excitement means I can hardly wait!
|Hawkie. Note the drooping wings|
|still looking good though from the right angle|
|moving along the branch was quite a difficult operation|
|drooping wings again|
|a close Bar-tailed Godwit (lappspove)|
|Two rather distant Black-tailed Godwits (svarthalespove)|
|the inset shows a Barwit (left) with one of the Blackwits|
|A blurred flock of Dunlin (myrsnipe) coming into land momentarily at our feet. A single Ringed Plover (sandlo) and a Little Stint (dvergsnipe) are also pictured|
|the same flock resting at distance with a single Knot (polarsnipe) and the Little Stint|